Social Policy – Social Services – Poverty & Homelessness – Philanthropy

Social policy, Social Policy in the U.S., Free online books, Books about Sexual Assault, life in the slums, Poverty & homelessness, Sexual abuse, Violence, Philanthropy and charity, Social services, Welfare.

Hint: When a book you want at Internet Archive is already checked out, go to the Internet Archive’s ‘Search’ box, check “Search Metadata”, and search for the book’s title. Sometimes they have two or more copies.


Century Past Library


Poverty, Homelessness & Violence

Poverty Collection

About 2,800 free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Poverty”. Be patient as the page loads.

Homelessness Collection

About 130 free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Homelessness”. Be patient as the page loads.

Children of Crisis: A Study of Courage and Fear

Coles, Robert
Little, Brown 1977        Dewey Dec.    305.23

“Selections of Coles’ social study of “African American children caught in the throes of the South’s racial integration; the young children of impoverished sharecroppers, migrant workers, and mountaineers in Appalachia; children whose families were transformed by the migration from South to North, from rural to urban communities … ” – Publisher

Rachel and her Children: Homeless Families in America

Rachel and her Children Book Cover

Kozol, Jonathan
Crown 1988        Dewey Dec.    362.5

“While the individual stories that Kozol tells so affectingly point out the vivid realities of urban poverty, the book also supplies statistics that detail the more abstract – and inhuman – attitudes that contemporary society assumes when attempting to deal with its victims.” -Booklist

Friendly Visiting Among the Poor

Friendly Visiting Among the Poor Book Cover

Richmond, Mary E.
Macmillan 1899        Dewey Dec.    362.5

Tells how to become acquainted with the poor, how to make the best of a sorry situation, how to spend and save, how to preserve health. Directions are clearly stated and the spirit of the book tends to earnest and effective action. Bibliographies.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

Selected Articles from a Century Ago on Political & Social Issues

The Battle with the Slum

The Battle with the Slum Book Cover

Riis, Jacob A.
Macmillan 1900        Dewey Dec.    362.5

Much enlarged, illustrated edition of his Ten years’ war (1900)
An intimately personal account of the conditions which prevailed in the tenement house districts, and of what has been done, and against what odds, to purge the city.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

The Children of the Poor

The Children of the Poor Book Cover

Riis, Jacob A.
Scribner 1902        Dewey Dec.    362.5

Supplements his How the other half lives. Bases statements on close observation of life in New York slums and interprets facts with unfailing sympathy.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

How the Other Half Lives; Studies Among the Tenements of New York

How the Other Half Lives Book Cover

Riis, Jacob A.
Scribner 1903        Dewey Dec.    362.5

Written while Associated press reporter at police headquarters.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

Poor People

Poor People Book Cover

Vollmann, William T.
Ecco 2007        Dewey Dec.    362.5

“The book struggles to confront poverty in all its hopelessness and brutality, its pride and abject fear, its fierce misery and its quiet resignation. ‘Poor People’ allows the poor to speak for themselves, explaining the causes and consequences of their impoverishment in their own cultural, social, and religious terms.” -Publisher

Differences that Matter: Social Policy and the Working Poor in the United States and Canada

Differences that Matter Book Cover

Zuberi, Dan
Cornell University 2006        Dewey Dec.    362.5

Poverty and policy in the United States and Canada — The story and the setting — The union difference — Health-care differences — Social welfare policy differences — Public investment and city-level differences — Subjective perceptions and future outlook — Improving the lives of the working poor

Sexual Abuse Collection

Over 1,000 free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Sexual Abuse”. Be patient as the page loads.

Violence Collection

About 5,300 free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Violence”. Be patient as the page loads.

Books on Crime, Criminal Justice, Terrorism

Fist, Stick, Knife, Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America

Canada, Geoffrey
Beacon 1995        Dewey Dec.    305.23

“A classic coming-of-age memoir that examines urban youth violence and its causes Long before U.S. News and World Report named him one of America’s Best Leaders and Oprah Winfrey called him “an angel from God,” Geoffrey Canada was a vulnerable, scared boy growing up in the South Bronx. Canada’s world was one where “sidewalk” boys learned the codes of the block and were ranked through the rituals of fist, stick, and knife. Then the streets changed, and the stakes got even higher. Canada relives a childhood in which violence stalked every street corner.” -Publisher

The Batterer: A Psychological Profile

The Batterer Book Cover

Dutton, Donald G. and Golant, Susan K.
Basic 1995        Dewey Dec.    362.8

The authors “provide an excellent into to the psychology of wife abusers, examining the different types of abusers; psychopathic, over-controlled, and cyclical.” -Libr J.

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide

Half the Sky Book Cover

Kristof, Nicholas D. and WuDunn, Sheryl
NY: Scribner’s Sons 1909        Dewey Dec.    362.8

The authors address what they consider to be “our era’s most pervasive human rights violation: the oppression of women in the developing world. They show that a little help can transform the lives of women and girls abroad and that the key to economic progress lies in unleashing women’s potential.” -Publisher

Rape and Society: Readings on the Problem of Sexual Assault

Rape and Society Book Cover

Searles, Patricia and Berger, Ronald J.
Westview 1995        Dewey Dec.    362.8

“Provides a comprehensive treatment of the subject, drawing on writers and researchers from across a range of social and behavioral sciences and the humanities and representing the experiences of women of diverse backgrounds and lifestyles… an essential resource for academics and professionals and for anyone wanting to come to grips with the magnitude of the problem of sexual violence.” -Publisher


Lucky Book Cover

Sebold, Alice
Back Bay 2002        Dewey Dec.    362.8

In this memoir, Alice Sebold reveals how her life was transformed when at age 18 she was raped and beaten in a park near her college campus.

Books on Drug and Alcohol Abuse, Addiction

Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls

Simmons, Rachel
Harcourt 2003        Dewey Dec.    305.23

“Dirty looks and taunting notes are just a few examples of girl bullying that girls and women have long suffered through silently and painfully. With this book Rachel Simmons elevated the nation’s consciousness and has shown millions of girls, parents, counselors, and teachers how to deal with this devastating problem. Poised to reach a wider audience in paperback, including the teenagers who are its subject, Odd Girl Out puts the spotlight on this issue, using real-life examples from both the perspective of the victim and of the bully.” – Publisher

Contents: The hidden culture of aggression in girls — Intimate enemies — The truth hurts — She’s all that — The bully in the mirror — Popular — Resistance — Parents and teachers — The road ahead.

Encyclopedia of Rape

Encyclopedia of Rape Book Cover

Smith, Merrill D.
Greenwood 2004        Dewey Dec.    362.8

“The Encyclopedia of Rape offers 185 entries in an A-to-Z essay format covering the historical scope and magnitude of the issue in the United States and globally. Written by a host of scholars from diverse fields, it provides informed perspectives on the key dimensions of the topic, from concepts, social movements, offenders, high-profile cases, legislation, influential activists, landmark texts, and victimology to representations in literature and art.” – Publisher

Social Services & Welfare

Philanthropy Collection

About 240 free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Philanthropy”. Be patient as the page loads.

Philanthropy and Social Progress; Seven Essays by Miss Jane Addams, Robert A. Woods, Father J.O.S. Huntington, Professor Franklin H. Giddings and Bernard Bosanquet

Philanthropy and Social Progress Book Cover

Addams, Jane et al.
Crowell 1893        Dewey Dec.    361

with introduction by Henry C. Adams. Essays on social settlements, principles and dangers of charity administration, philanthropy and morality, etc. Practical and stimulating.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

Over 100 magazines free and online, from the early 1800s to today, at Read Old Magazines Online

The Literature of Philanthropy

The Literature of Philanthropy Book Cover

Goodale, Frances A., ed.
NY: Harper 1893        Dewey Dec.    361

“A woman [from the State of New York] of eminent success in each department has then been asked to make a collection of representative work [periodical literature] in that department; to include in it an example of her own work … ” – from the Introduction. Chapter headings:- The Literature of Philanthropy, – Criminal Reform, – Tenement Neighborhood Idea, – Tenement Neighborhood Idea – University Settlement, – Tenement Neighborhood Idea – Medical Women in Tenements, – The Trained Nurse, – The Society of the Red Cross, – The Indian, – The Indian – A Woman Among the Indians, – The Antislavery Struggle, – The Antislavery Legacy, – The Negro and Civilization, – The Education of the Blind

The Divided Welfare State: The Battle Over Public and Private Social Benefits in the United States

The Divided Welfare State Book Cover

Hacker, Jacob S.
Cambridge University 2002        Dewey Dec.    361

The politics of public and private social benefits — Connected at birth: public and private pensions before 1945 — Sibling rivalry: public and private pensions after 1945 — Seeds of exceptionalism: public and private health insurance before 1945 — The elusive cure: public and private health insurance after 1945 — The formation of the American welfare regime — The future of the American welfare regime

Hands to Work: The Stories of Three Families Racing the Welfare Clock

Hands to Work Book Cover

Hancock, LynNell
Morrow 2002        Dewey Dec.    361.6

“This study depicts welfare in America today through the stories of three women from the South Bronx – Alina, Brenda, and Christine – who were affected by the 1996 Personal Responsibility Act … which limits lifetime federal financial assistance to five years for families and two years for singles… Attention-holding and articulate, this important book on how America treats residents who are ‘down and out’ is highly recommended.” -Libr J.

Introduction to the Study of the Dependent, Defective, and Delinquent Classes, and of their Social Treatment

The Study of the Dependent, Defective, and Delinquent Classes Book Cover

Henderson, C. R.
Heath 1901        Dewey Dec.    360

Appendix containing suggestions, references, etc., p. 349-94.
Compendious, suggestive and enlightening. Altogether the best book of its kind either for general reading or for classroom work.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

Encyclopedia of Social Welfare History in North America

Herrick, John M. and Stuart, Paul H.
Sage 2005        Dewey Dec.    362

The encyclopedia defines social welfare broadly to include education, informal mutual assistance, the development of the social work profession, and voluntary charitable activities as well as state supported public welfare activities. The coverage is broad and interdisciplinary, including the fields of anthropology, health sciences, history, political science, social work, and sociology.

Please visit our collection of 2,000+ selected online magazine and newspaper articles on 40+ subjects, plus online historical maps & vintage photo collections, at Century Past History Resources

Social Services in the United States: Policies and Programs

Social Services in the United States Book Cover

Kamerman, Sheila B and Kahn, Alfred J.
Temple University 1976        Dewey Dec.    361

The Price of Citizenship: Redefining America’s Welfare State

The Price of Citizenship Book Cover

Katz, Michael B.
Holt 2002        Dewey Dec.    361.6

“Katz has written a defining history of post-Nixon transformations of America’s welfare state, including its non-profit and private sectors (private pensions, health insurance, etc.)” – Pub Wkly

Constructive and Preventive Philanthropy

Constructive and Preventive Philanthropy Book Cover

Lee, Joseph
Macmillan 1902        Dewey Dec.    361

Considers libraries, savings and loan associations, building laws, protection of homes, home industries, vacation schools, playgrounds, baths, clubs, industrial training, medical inspection, etc. Bibliographic notes.
– – A.L.A.Catalog 1904

Social Services Collection

Numerous free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Social Services”. Be patient as the page loads.

Social Work Collection

About 700 books from the Internet Archive free online on the subject of Social Work.
Be patient while the page loads.

Public Welfare Collection

Numerous free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Public Welfare”. Be patient as the page loads.

Books on Parenting, Family and Relationships, Child Development, Aging

Child Abuse Collection

Numerous free online books at the Internet Archive, resulting from a search for books on “Child Abuse”. Be patient as the page loads.

Child Abuse

Child Abuse Book Cover

Almond, Lucinda
Greenhaven 2006        Dewey Dec.    362.7

“Presents arguments for and against various issues, such as the seriousness of child abuse, child trafficking, contributing factors, how society could reduce child abuse, and whether or not changes in the criminal justice system would be beneficial.” -Publisher

What Works in Child Welfare

What Works in Child Welfare Book Cover

Kluger, Miriam P., Alexander, Gina, and Curtis, Patrick A., eds.
Child Welfare League of America 2001        Dewey Dec.    362.7

The book is divided into six major sections: family preservations and support services, child protective services, out-of-home care, adoption, child care, and services for adolescents. Each section contains information [from a variety of authors] on what works, conflicting evidence, cost effectiveness, and a summary table.

Amazing Grace: The Lives of Children and the Conscience of a Nation

Amazing Grace Book Cover

Kozol, Jonathan
Crown 1995        Dewey Dec.    362.7

“Kozol’s powerfully understated report takes us inside rat-infested homes that are freezing in winter, overcrowded schools, dysfunctional clinics, soup kitchens … While his narrative offers no specific solutions, it forcefully drives home his conviction: a civilized nation cannot allow this situation to continue.” Pub Wkly.

Wasted: The Plight of America’s Unwanted Children

Wasted Book Cover

Murphy, Patrick T.
Ivan R. Dee 1997        Dewey Dec.    362.7

“Patrick Murphy explains the facts and failures of the child welfare system – and offers solutions – better than any expert I’ve ever read on the subject. He believes, and I agree, that too often irresponsible behavior is rewarded. ‘Wasted’ is a first-rate read – poignant and instructive.” -Edward Koch, former mayor NYC

Social Workers’ Guide to the Serial Publications of Representative Social Agencies

Rushmore, Elsie Mitchell, ed.
Russell Sage 1921        Dewey Dec.    016.3

About 4000 publications received by the Russell Sage foundation are listed and also grouped by subject.

Century Past Library